Saturday, December 28, 2013

Ah, Christmas, St. Stephan's, the Holy Innocents...but more on that later...

I just watched Spartacus, 1960 vintage.  I don't care if the real Spartacus was an army deserter and bandit who was sold into slavery as an adult and didn't really give a hoot about freeing all the slaves and changing society.  What REALLY matters is that this film had Ustinov and Laughton, the two greatest Neros of filmdom, side by side in scene after scene!  GREAT FLICK!

Ursula Andres, Catherine Deneuve, and Charo twice!

Friday, December 6, 2013


Cleaned out the pantry today and found several cans that were WAY past date and 2 small cans of crab that were in their last month...Having just gone through the soup, I was in the mood, so decided to find out what was left over from Thanksgiving, etc...

Cubed (1/2 inch) two Irish potatoes, chopped 3 leftover scallions and cooked them for about 5 minutes in a couple tablespoons butter and 1/2 tsp salt...

Deglazed with about a cup of pink moscato---only lightish wine I had...Added about 1.5 cups seafood stock (I am a fanatic about keeping fish, veg, beef and chicken stock in the pantry---Kitchen Basics).  Added 1/2 tsp thyme and 1/4 tsp pepper.  Added crab.  simmered about 20 minutes.  Mashed up w/ potato masher...

Added a cup of milk and 1/2 cup heavy cream and a couple T tawny port---I'd have used sherry but couldn't find any...brought back to a boil...mixed 3 T flour with about 1/3 cup stock and stirred in...

Good beyond belief.  Used up some stuff that was fixin' to go bad.  Nice.
...Ah, but maybe it`s the way you were taught
Or maybe it`s the way we fought
But a smile never grins without tears to begin
For each kiss is a cry we all lost
Though there is nothing left to gain
But for the banshee that stole the grave
Cause we find ourselves in the same old mess
Singin' drunken lullabies

---Flogging Molly

A Cowboy's Christmas Prayer

I ain't much good at prayin', and You may not know me, Lord ~
I ain't much seen in churches where they preach Thy Holy Word,
But You may have observed me out here on the lonely plains,
A-lookin' after cattle, feelin' thankful when it rains,
Admirin' Thy great handiwork, the miracle of grass,
Aware of Thy kind Spirit in the way it comes to pass
That hired men on horseback and the livestock that we tend
Can look up at the stars at night and know we've got a Friend.
So here's ol' Christmas comin' on, remindin' us again
Of Him whose comin' brought goodwill into the hearts of men.
A cowboy ain't no preacher, Lord, but if You'll hear my prayer,
I'll ask as good as we have got for all men everywhere.
Don't let no hearts be bitter, Lord; don't let no child be cold.
Make easy beds for them that's sick, and them that's weak and old.
Let kindness bless the trail we ride, no matter what we're after,
And sorta keep us on Your side, in tears as well as laughter.
I've seen old cows a-starvin', and it ain't no pretty sight:
Please don't leave no one hungry, Lord,
On Thy good Christmas night ~
No man, no child, no woman, and no critter on four feet ~
I'll aim to do my best to help You find 'em chuck to eat.
I'm just a sinful cowpoke, Lord, ~ ain't got no business prayin' ~
But still I hope You'll ketch a word or two of what I'm a-sayin':
We speak of Merry Christmas, Lord ~ I reckon You'll agree
There ain't no Merry Christmas for nobody that ain't free.
So one thing more I'll ask You, Lord: just help us what You can
To save some seeds of freedom for the future sons of man!

Author Unknown

Monday, December 2, 2013

Oh, turkey fog.  I need a fast.  A month-long fast.  Thank you, dear Lord, for Advent.  Thank you for the season of longing!  You thought of everything.  It's as if you are omniscient, or something...Oh!  Wait!  yes, you are.  Because you are God.  If only we'd listen to you and do as you say, how happy we could be.

Lo, how a Rose e'er blooming
from tender stem hath sprung!
Of Jesse's lineage coming,
as those of old have sung.
It came, a floweret bright,
amid the cold of winter,
when half spent was the night.

Isaiah 'twas foretold it,
the Rose I have in mind;
with Mary we behold it
the Virgin Mother kind.
To show God's love aright,
she bore to us a Savior,
when half spent was the night.

I wish you desperate yearning for the Savior, and happy deprivation in preparation for The Feast.